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Mozilla Club of UCSC

Cloud Computing, an Introduction…

Marita Thushari
Undergraduate at UCSC.
・3 min read

In this era of technology everyone tends to search for the best solution or resource for an affordable cost. The concept of Cloud Computing paves the way for this search easily and it has been a great solution for many during this pandemic as well. In this article a brief introduction will be discussed on the concept of Cloud Computing and how it becomes an easy & affordable solution in many situations.

What is Cloud Computing?

Cloud Computing is the concept that delivers computing services over the Internet using the ‘Pay-as-you-go’ pricing model, which means payment is done only for the usage of the services provided. Therefore, this is also called ‘Consumption-based model’. Due to this model it becomes typically cheaper when compared to purchasing the required hardware components for computing.

The main services provided by Cloud computing are Computing power and Storage. There are other services provided such as Networking, Database management, etc. These cloud services are provided by various Cloud Service providers and the users who are called the Cloud tenants pay for the services they use.

Features…

Cloud Computing holds various advantages such as Reliability & High availability as it is accessible from multiple devices across the globe, Scalability as resources can be increased to cater the demand accordingly, Elasticity as resources can be allocated and deallocated for users, Agility, Geo distribution as devices that are distributed across the globe are connected with each other which also provides Fault Tolerance and Disaster recovery.

Cost savings is one of the major advantage due to the ability of paying only for the service used which also means that there is no Capital cost needed. High speed and Ability to deploy more new services easily than when using them on-premises are also some other available advantages.

The disadvantages are that complexity may be increased when migrating the data & apps that are already existing to cloud platforms and Internet connectivity is required to use & access the cloud services.

Cloud Service Models…

The main Cloud Service models are Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS).

IaaS - Produces the computer infrastructure (hardware components) as the cloud service, Cloud tenant should be responsible for OS maintenance and Network configurations. Eg: Virtual Machines

PaaS - Produces the platforms required for applications as the cloud service by managing the hosting environment, Cloud tenant is only required to deploy their applications. Eg: Azure App Services

SaaS - Manages all aspects of the application environment therefore Cloud tenant only needs to provide the required data that is to be processed or stored. Eg: Office 365 from Microsoft, Google Drive

Cloud Deployment Models…

The main Cloud deployment models are Public cloud, Private cloud and Hybrid cloud. The describe on how the cloud services are provided and used by the users.

Public cloud – Cloud services are provided to anyone over the public Internet.

Private cloud – Cloud services are exclusively used by users of a business or an organization.

Hybrid cloud – Builds a connectivity between the Public and Private clouds allowing the data to be shared between them.

How can the Cloud Services can be accessed?

There are many Cloud Service providers at present and there can be more in the near future as well. These Cloud Service Providers provide many services that can be used by anyone through internet. Some of the main Cloud Service providers are AWS from Amazon, Microsoft Azure from Microsoft, Google Cloud from Google and many more. Each of these solutions have their own unique and common characteristics in their available cloud services. And the costs related to each service can also differ among the various service providers. Therefore, it would be easy for anyone to practice these solutions first and then select the most suitable one for their implementation purposes. Most of these Cloud Service providers provide a free trial for this purpose.

For more details about Microsoft Azure click on
https://azure.microsoft.com/en-us/

For more details about AWS click on
https://aws.amazon.com/

For more details about Google Cloud click on
https://cloud.google.com/

Due to the above existing features of Cloud computing, it is obvious to consider that most of the next-gen businesses will be built on this platform.

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